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OND Editors  OND is a community feature  on Daily Kos, consisting of news stories from around the world, sometimes coupled with a daily theme, original research or commentary.  Editors of OND impart their own presentation styles and content choices, typically publishing each day near 12:00AM Eastern Time.

OND Editors  Welcome to the Overnight News Digest with a crew consisting of founder Magnifico, current leader Neon Vincent, regular editors side pocket, maggiejean, wader, Man Oh Man, rfall, Doctor RJ and JML9999. Alumni editors include (but not limited to) palantir, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, ek hornbeck, ScottyUrb, Interceptor7, BentLiberal, Oke and jlms qkw. The guest editor is annetteboardman.

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Sun May 24, 2015 at 05:00 PM PDT

Kitchen Table Kibitzing: May 24

by side pocket

New Views

   We are fortunate to live on a hill with nice views close and distant. The views change from season to season as trees leaf out and the become bare, but most of our trees are eucalyptus which don't change. Thus anything our neighbors do is quite noticeable. Our cat Louie is always alert for any changes.

   I woke up one morning recently and sat on my blogging couch and observed the view as usual. Something different on the hill about 1/3 mile away, an unusual pattern of mowing.

  I'd better have some coffee and check this out more clearly.
   Two hypotheses came to mind.
1)  Started on the right and was drinking beer while mowing. By the time he had the third or fourth beer, the lines became less clear, or
2)  Started on the left and tested the slope or the settings on the mower. Once they were satisfactory he mowed in a more standard pattern.

    Then I realized the more likely solution. He was practicing making Crop Circles.  According to some estimates, crop circles appear every week somewhere around the world. And yet here in N. California where strange vibes abound they are curiously absent. We have many hills and they usually appear in flat areas, and right before my eyes here was proof of a whole new phenomenon.
     Of course you may be of the mind that crop circles are supernatural in origin. They did begin to appear shortly after the aliens crashed in Roswell in 1947. This connection settles the controversy for me right there. How can there be any doubt? I don't know about anyone else, but this photo clearly shows a crop circle that could only be created by aliens:

Far Out, Dudes.
   I have evidence, however, that sometimes humans have to take matters into their own hands. In the progressive state of Nebraska, Boldnebraska folks are taking action. With the images of the Santa Cruz oil spill clearly in mind, plus the spate of other pipeline "accidents" in our awareness, they have created a message crop circle.
Please pay attention, President Obama.
We've been out on the Tanderup farm again...
The land that lies in the path of the Keystone XL pipeline and on the Ponca Trail of Tears — where Willie Nelson and Neil Young played at last fall's "Harvest the Hope" benefit concert — is now the home of a massive new 15-acre-spanning #NOKXL Crop Art installation that sends a direct message to President Obama:

You must REJECT Keystone XL to protect your presidential legacy of taking bold action to combat climate change.
Farmer Art Tanderup, artist John Quigley and some amazing volunteers worked in the field over eight days to complete the new image — a riff on the Presidential Seal.
The olive branch and arrows in the talons of the Eagle symbolize the power of peace and war in the original Presidential Seal; Nebraskans stand firmly with our allies of the Great Sioux Nation, whose treaty rights are being violated with Keystone XL.
The Eagle holds six arrows representing the six states in the original path of KXL — MT, SD, NE, KS, OK, TX.
The three stars at bottom represent the states in the fight to protect their land and water from the proposed Keystone XL route — MT, SD and NE.

  Although this topic is more serious than my usual KTK, it is serious indeed and I laud anyone who is making their voice heard on the environmental crises we face today. Special kudos to the Plumber family and other Kossacks who have been on the front line on this issue.
   Anyway, how can a diary be too srs when it includes a pootie picture, right?
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OND Editors  OND is a community feature  on Daily Kos, consisting of news stories from around the world, sometimes coupled with a daily theme, original research or commentary.  Editors of OND impart their own presentation styles and content choices, typically publishing each day near 12:00AM Eastern Time.

OND Editors  Welcome to the Overnight News Digest with a crew consisting of founder Magnifico, current leader Neon Vincent, regular editors side pocket, maggiejean, wader, Man Oh Man, rfall, Doctor RJ and JML9999. Alumni editors include (but not limited to) palantir, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, ek hornbeck, ScottyUrb, Interceptor7, BentLiberal, Oke and jlms qkw. The guest editor is annetteboardman.

Please feel free to share your articles and stories in the comments.

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Sun May 17, 2015 at 05:00 PM PDT

Kitchen Table Kibitzing: May 17

by side pocket

Kitchen Table Kibitzing is a community series for those who wish to share part of the evening around a virtual kitchen table with kossacks who are caring and supportive of one another. So bring your stories, jokes, photos, funny pics, music, and interesting videos, as well as links—that you think this community would appreciate. Readers may notice that most who post diaries and comments in this series already know one another to some degree, but newcomers should not feel excluded. We welcome guests at our kitchen table, and hope to make some new friends as well.
Recommend current diaries and share on social media for impactful viewership and activism. Your support of Kitchen Table Kibitzing friends is appreciated.
Climate Action Hub

The Inoculation Project: Science and Math in Red State Schools

KosAbility

Find a Daily Kos meet-up near you!
Connect! Unite! Act!
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Sun May 03, 2015 at 08:58 PM PDT

Overnight News Digest: May 3, 2015

by side pocket

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OND Editors  OND is a community feature  on Daily Kos, consisting of news stories from around the world, sometimes coupled with a daily theme, original research or commentary.  Editors of OND impart their own presentation styles and content choices, typically publishing each day near 12:00AM Eastern Time.

OND Editors  Welcome to the Overnight News Digest with a crew consisting of founder Magnifico, current leader Neon Vincent, regular editors side pocket, maggiejean, wader, Man Oh Man, rfall, Doctor RJ and JML9999. Alumni editors include (but not limited to) palantir, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, ek hornbeck, ScottyUrb, Interceptor7, BentLiberal, Oke and jlms qkw. The guest editor is annetteboardman.

Please feel free to share your articles and stories in the comments.

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Sun May 03, 2015 at 05:00 PM PDT

Kitchen Table Kibitzing: May 3

by side pocket

Trees

Table with yellow teapot and cloth embroidered with blue flowers

   We are blessed with a property which has many trees. The house has a row of Cyprus trees along one side which were planted about 100 years ago as a windbreak. Their lifespan is approximately 100 years so some have fallen and limbs continuously cascade as firewood. The most common tree is the eucalyptus which was introduced to California years ago from Australia. These form the bulk of my firewood as their BTU output rivals Oak. We have hundreds of Bay trees and yes, you can pick the leaves for cooking. And there are many Redwoods, some of which date back hundreds of years. They would have been logged save for the fact that they are on an extremely steep slope. Holly, Willow, and Poplar trees are here also.

   But our most spectacular tree is our Black Walnut. It is one of the largest of its kind anywhere. The trunk is 25 feet around and I just paced off the periphery: 130 yards. It does produce black walnuts but they are of limited use so we don't harvest them. If we ever have to sell this place I hope and pray that the tree remains.

  Our other Walnut tree was here when we moved in, age unknown. It is an English Walnut and produced the largest walnuts we have ever seen. They were so spectacular we entered them in the Sonoma County Harvest Fair and won a blue ribbon. Slowly the tree deteriorated and then woodpeckers moved in and every single nut had a hole on top and no nutmeat. We loved that tree but finally this year it is totally dead. It must be cut down but nostalgia has kept me from doing it.
R I P
  Trees, like humans, have a lifespan. The peach tree which was here already 35 years ago has been incredibly productive with the best white-fleshed peaches I've ever tasted. It was hit by several diseases including cytospora gummosus canker which is incurable. I kept it going for years by pruning off the bad limbs but now this is all that's left.
Thank you for all the peaches.
We should get about 30 peaches this year. Next year, who knows?
    From trees to flowers. Mrs. side pocket grows Amaryllis in the garden and greenhouse and brings up the best ones for a display near our from door. Thank you dear, much appreciated.
   It's been a cold and foggy day here; a pleasure to sit in front of the woodstove. Quite a contrast to the high temperatures of a few days ago. Hope everyone's day went well.

   

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OND Editors  OND is a community feature  on Daily Kos, consisting of news stories from around the world, sometimes coupled with a daily theme, original research or commentary.  Editors of OND impart their own presentation styles and content choices, typically publishing each day near 12:00AM Eastern Time.

OND Editors  Welcome to the Overnight News Digest with a crew consisting of founder Magnifico, current leader Neon Vincent, regular editors side pocket, maggiejean, wader, Man Oh Man, rfall, Doctor RJ and JML9999. Alumni editors include (but not limited to) palantir, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, ek hornbeck, ScottyUrb, Interceptor7, BentLiberal, Oke and jlms qkw. The guest editor is annetteboardman.

Please feel free to share your articles and stories in the comments.

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Table with yellow teapot and cloth embroidered with blue flowers

   It is a totally spring-like day so gardening is on my mind. Last week I covered the initial construction of my mega-pole bean apparatus. Last week's pole bean diary. My son came over and we attached 14 slats to the horizontals. His work is always so precise it boggles my mind.

We then lined the whole trench with hardware cloth, as gopher protection. In my experience it can last as long as 10 years.
   Next process is to fill the trench with dirt. I got some from an old compost site, plus some potting soil. Then I transcended my hatred for gophers and walked around the farm looking for gopher holes, and shoveled the gopher dirt into a wheelbarrow for the trench. It is beautiful soil. I need quite a bit more but have time because the plants are not ready to transplant.
    After the inch of rain Friday the tomato bed looks lush and the 36 tomatoes are growing rapidly. Most have flowers.
Plenty to share by June.
 Sometimes onions get the wrong idea and start to produce a seed head rather than putting energy into bulb production. I disabuse them of this by breaking that off.
  I love watercress but it's so expensive that I decided to grow my own. Never having grown it before, I planted some in the Fall. It grew so slowly that I could hardly differentiate it from the inevitable weeds. Now that it's warming up it's moving along. I'm starting more in the greenhouse for a summer crop.
Wimpy but tasty.
  Three years ago I planted a nectarine tree in the corner of the garden. Not wanting to have a huge tree there I specified a "dwarf" tree. Well, dwarfing techniques must be pretty good nowadays because LOL it's the same size as when I planted it. Who knows?
Peewee tree.
 I planted brussels sprouts in the fall, intermixed with red onions. Birds devastated the leaves and I thought the crop was toast. Then they recovered somewhat and I had hope.

  Here they are today. Sprouts are forming on some of the stalks but it seems the bird devastation might have been too much for the mature potential. There's always something.

   Stepping back, you see that wherever we haven't planted yet fills with California Poppies. In the back is the mass of fava beans which is a cover crop. I harvested a bunch of them yesterday which will be for tonight's dinner.
Everything is in gopher-proof (we hope) beds.
 One last story. We removed the inoperable floor furnace from the dining room and of course I wanted to patch the hole. I contacted quite number of floor places and they all said "We don't do that. We'll weave it in and re-finish your whole room, that'll be $1800."
My son said he could do what I wanted and so he did; a perfectly matched job upon which he's doing the final sanding as we speak. We found the original stain, too. I couldn't be more pleased.
  I hope your day is going perfectly or even better than that.
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Sun Apr 19, 2015 at 08:58 PM PDT

Overnight News Digest: April 19

by side pocket

Welcome to the Overnight News Digest with a crew consisting of founder Magnifico, current leader Neon Vincent, regular editors side pocket, maggiejean, wader, Doctor RJ, rfall, JML9999 and Man Oh Man. Alumni editors include (but not limited to) palantir, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, ek hornbeck, ScottyUrb, Interceptor7, BentLiberal, Oke and jlms qkw.  

OND is a regular community feature on Daily Kos, consisting of news stories from around the world, sometimes coupled with a daily theme, original research or commentary. Editors of OND impart their own presentation styles and content choices, typically publishing each day near 12:00AM Eastern Time.

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Table with yellow teapot and cloth embroidered with blue flowers

   Beans are not only a mainstay of our diet, they are of vital importance in a vegetarian diet. It is easy to find many references to the benefits of eating beans. We plant beans in the early spring and again in mid-summer. For years I planted Blue Lake bush beans which I had found were very productive. As important as production is flavor, and they excel in that, also. I tried novelty beans, such as the bush beans which were purple when picked but turned green when cooked. Since beans are the same color as their leaves they are not always easy to find in a dense planting, so these purple beans solved the problem. However both production and taste were not up to par.

   I avoided pole beans because of gophers. If they got one or two bush beans there were plenty more and gave me a chance to trap the gopher. Pole beans are vastly more productive but also if you lose one you lose 10x the number of beans. I line beds with metal hardware cloth but the critters often circumvent all my protective measures. For the last few years I made a teepee of sticks and planted 4 beans per stick. This worked and the beans were much easier to find for picking, plus they were higher so one didn't have to bend so much. Mrs. side pocket does much of the harvesting.

  This year I'm getting srs. With my son's help we built a giant framework embedded in a trench; the end posts buried another two feet. There will be 15 vertical 1 x 1 strips for a total of 60 plants. The beans are now growing in flats in the greenhouse.

 We assembled the structure in the area between the tomato plants and the vegetable beds. Since my son is a perfectionist contractor everything was perfectly measured and connected with huge nuts and bolts.
  Then we realized it wouldn't be so easy to move. This was made of salvaged 2 x 4s but from the days that they were actually 2 inches by 4 inches; very heavy. And it would have to be lifted and carried over my valuable tomato crop.
Be very very careful.
 Three of us could barely lift it but it was unwieldy. We called the neighbor across the street who willingly came over and helped us. Thanks to my son's careful measurements it slipped easily into the prepared holes, into which we tamped dirt. The trench will be lined with hardware cloth with a rolled edge which will be totally impregnable to gophers (crosses fingers). I'll fill it with the best soil I can get, amended with my own compost. My hope is that the production will put Jack's beanstalk to shame.
24 inch deep trench.
 Presently we have lettuce, parsley, chives, peas, potatoes, garlic, 3 kinds of onions, arugula, watercress, beets, fava beans, asparagus, and weeds thriving in the garden. The peaches are sizing up. Here's hoping you all have some veggies on your kitchen table soon.

   

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Sun Apr 12, 2015 at 08:58 PM PDT

Overnight News Digest: April 12

by side pocket

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OND Editors  OND is a community feature  on Daily Kos, consisting of news stories from around the world, sometimes coupled with a daily theme, original research or commentary.  Editors of OND impart their own presentation styles and content choices, typically publishing each day near 12:00AM Eastern Time.

OND Editors  Welcome to the Overnight News Digest with a crew consisting of founder Magnifico, current leader Neon Vincent, regular editors side pocket, maggiejean, wader, Man Oh Man, rfall, Doctor RJ and JML9999. Alumni editors include (but not limited to) palantir, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, ek hornbeck, ScottyUrb, Interceptor7, BentLiberal, Oke and jlms qkw. The guest editor is annetteboardman.

Please feel free to share your articles and stories in the comments.

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Sun Apr 12, 2015 at 05:00 PM PDT

Kitchen Table Kibitzing: April 12

by side pocket

Table with yellow teapot and cloth embroidered with blue flowers

Hipsters

   Living on a rather isolated farm in a rural county, sometimes I miss contemporary culture. In addition I don't watch TV (although I finally embraced the Downton Abbey phenomenon). People such as the Kardashians are mysteries. Thus the name "Hipster" remained under my personal radar. Recently San Francisco resident and good friend kimoconnor mentioned that the park near her home was often trashed by Hipsters, so I began to wonder who they might be.
   I asked the daughter of a friend, who lives in an affluent suburb of San Francisco, about hipsters. She said they were young, the guys had facial hair and rolled up their pant legs, they wore dark-rimmed glasses and men and women usually wore hats. I remembered a recent New Yorker cover that might pertain, and sure enough, even the artist's title confirmed it.

Hipster Stole
Armed with a scintilla of knowledge I began some visual research. While sitting in the extensive open plaza of the aforementioned affluent town I began to see folks who might be hipsters. Most were youngish but some older folks had adopted all but the rolled up tight pants. I categorized these as ex-hippie hipster wannabes. Returning home I focused my research via Google which knows all. And there it was……there are rules. if you want to know how to be a hipster you go to Wikihow.  How to be a Hipster.

Since it's possible that some readers here might not wish to know the entire chapter and verse (note biblical reference) I will excerpt just a few important points.
 

Hipsters tend to be in their teens through to their 30s. This is part of today's "extended adolescent" era, consisting of existential angst, searching for purpose and inner worth, and asking the meaning of everything.
 Hipsters tend to congregate in very urban settings and they're connected globally thanks to the Internet. In the USA, you'll tend to find hipsters in major metropolitan centers where "anything goes".
  Read hipster classics. Hipster magazines, such as Vice, Another Magazine, and Wallpaper. Foreign magazines are good too.
  Remember to use perhaps the most important hipster line: "I liked them before they were cool."
  Learn to play a musical instrument, the more obscure, the better.
  And finally, I think it's important to have a tattoo. This won't differentiate you all that much because everyone I see today during my rare forays out in the world has one or more.
    Well, there you go. All you need to embrace the coolest new lifestyle. But of course some of you might already be hipsters. Those in that group are welcome to give advice or share the shocking underside of hipsterism. If you are old, older, or oldest, there's little hope for you. However you can still watch the whole thing unfold on social media. I believe that means your smartphone or other device.

     You may think that this is not srs, and is just a game. You might be right.

      I'm so glad I could be of assistance.

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